World of Football

Usual and not so usual Football News from around the World

Chelsea can buy Alex for just a dollar.

alex.jpgChelsea can sign Alex, currently playing for PSV Eindhoven, for just $1 in the summer, after details of their strange agreement with PSV emerged last night.

The Brazilian defender was signed by Chelsea in 2004 for eight million euros, but he was transferred to PSV because he could not satisfy the strict work permit regulations of UK.

Chelsea however have first option to buy the defender and Roman Abramovich’s cash rich club can exercise that right by paying just $1 at the end of the season.

A Chelsea source said last night: “Alex is a PSV player. His international transfer certificate is held by PSV and he is registered with them.

“We have an option to buy him at the end of the season, but he is not a Chelsea player. We have no control or influence over his selection.”

Meanwhile, PSV coach Ronald Koeman did claim that Chelsea own the player after Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at the Emirates Stadium. A statement Stamford Bridge officials were keen to distance themselves from.

Despite Chelsea’s denial, Alex claims he is already a Chelsea player and insists that he may be at Stamford Bridge next season.

The PSV defender claimed: “I know my contract belongs to Chelsea, but I’m a PSV player. I would love to play in the Premiership and we will see what happens at the end of the season.

“I don’t know whether I will stay in Holland or get a chance in England with Chelsea. I cannot really explain what happened because I thought I was going to be playing for Chelsea this season but apparently there was a problem with a work permit and I had to go back to PSV.

“I’m not sure whether I will stay with PSV or go to Chelsea. I will go back to Brazil this summer and then I will leave it up to my representatives to sort out my future.

“If this makes Chelsea happy that’s good, but my only thought was to help PSV beat Arsenal and go through. I was determined to do that and I am very happy to have done that.

“We will see who we get in the draw but it would not worry me if we got Chelsea. That would give me the chance again to show what I am capable of as a player.”

Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon, who is in Athens for UEFA Champions League draw, insists they are first in the queue to sign the Brazilian but it is understood they are unlikely to exercise that right.

Alex is required to play in 70 per cent of Brazil’s internationals to qualify for a work permit.

Despite his classy performance for PSV on Wednesday, Chelsea doubt whether he is good enough to play in the Premiership, but they will make a decision on his future at the end of the season.

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Taxmen knock on Maradona’s door

maradona.jpgDiego Maradona’s money transfers and other financial transactions are being subjected to enquiry and probe in court at the request of tax authorities, Argentina’s Central Bank confirmed on Wednesday.

The bank said it has asked financial institutions to provide information about all the accounts, transfers, fixed deposits and other transactions made by Maradona from 2005 onwards.

Maradona has a cult following among footballer fans all over the world. He captained Argentina to the 1986 football World Cup. He, alongside Brazil’s Pele, was named by FIFA as one of the greatest players in soccer history in 2001.

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No violence in 2008 says ÖFB

Austrian football officials believe that violent clashes are unlikely to happen at the Euro 2008 football tournament, which is co-hosted by Austria and Switzerland.

Friedrich Stickler, president of the Austrian Football Association (ÖFB) said at a parliamentary question hour on Tuesday that the situation at international tournaments was very different than at local games.

“I want to mention that there is a big difference between club football and national teams. What is happening now in club football all over Europe, cannot be directly compared to national teams,” Stickler said.

One reason was that the higher proportion of female fans at international games reduced the potential for violence, he said.

UEFA head Michel Platini expressed concern over hooliganism in Europe’s football stadiums after the unrest, the Austrian press agency reported. His concerns were for football itself, not the Euro 2008 in particular, he said.

“We live in a violent world and that has its effects on football,” the UEFA president told journalists at the headquarters of European football in Nyon,Switzerland.

Admitting that football organizations were struggling to deal with the violence, Platini announced close cooperation with European police forces.

In the recent weeks a number of football-related instances of violence all over Europe caused widespread concern, the most serious of which happened in Italy and resulted in the death of a policeman during clashes between fans during a Serie A match between Catania and Palermo.

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Hammers in racism row

west-ham-united-crest.jpgWest Ham United find themselves entangled in a racist row. Hammers fans have been reportedly filmed singing anti-Semitic songs during their Premiership defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Upton Park on Sunday, and as a result the club face a police and FA investigation.

A video showed a group of Hammers fans singing a song referring to Spurs’ large Jewish fanbase.

“We take this very seriously and we expect anybody identified on the video to be dealt with harshly by the club,” an FA spokesman said on Tuesday.

“We will be contacting West Ham to hear their version of events. We will make it very clear that we want no repeat of this kind of thing.”

The have also opened investigations into the alleged racism charge.

“Officers from the public order football unit are investigating a complaint of an anti-Semitic video being shown on an internet site,” a police spokeswoman said.

“The film appeared to have been made at the West Ham versus Spurs match on Sunday. We contacted the website and requested the removal of the film.”

Although West Ham chairman Eggert Magnusson had praised the support from their fans during Sunday’s match,now the club say that they are aware of the allegation and reiterated their stand against racism in football.

“Following video evidence of spectators chanting racist abuse during our Premiership match against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday, West Ham United would like to make it clear that we are taking the matter very seriously,” a club statement read.

“We are a leading campaigner in the Kick Racism Out of Football campaign and will not tolerate racist behaviour of any kind at Upton Park.

“We will investigate this matter fully, attempt to identify the perpetrators and take the appropriate action.”

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Ugandan Clubs want share of FIFA grants

flag.gifNEWLY elected Super Division Clubs Association chairman Godfrey Kisekka has promised to lobby FUFA(Federation of Uganda Football Associations) to allocate part of the annual $250,000 grant from soccer governing body FIFA, to support his members.

Kisekka, who was elected to the clubs’ top job after serving it for nine years as secretary and vice-chairman, argued that FUFA does little to support the association.

“We all know that our clubs are the backbone of the national teams but when our players get injured at national engagements, we are required to treat them without any help from FUFA,” he argued.

Kisekka was elected unopposed during the associations’ general assembly at FUFA House yesterday.

The KCC interim chairman has been deputy to Col. Jackson Tushabe of Victors club.

Villa secretary Edward Luyimbazi Mugalu beat Mbale Heroes’ Moses Twalla by 20-9 votes for the vice-chairman’s seat.

Acting commissioner for sports in the ministry of education and sports and chairman of Boroboro football club Omara Apita beat Police’s Livingstone Lajan in the vote for secretary.

Newly instituted Express interim committee members were locked out because they aren’t yet recognised by SDCA. Masaka did not show up.


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Liverpool knockout holders Barca

Livlivpool.giferpool FC withstood a late barrage by FC Barcelona to book their place in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals as the 2005 winners ousted the holders on away goals, despite Eidur Gudjohnsen bringing the visitors a 1-0 victory at Anfield. With the aggregate scores level at 2-2, Liverpool’s first-leg success proved decisive and kept the five-time champions dreaming of another triumph.

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Under threat minister restores PZPN board

Under the suspension threat from FIFA, Poland’s Minister of Sport Tomasz Lipiec restored the governing board of Poland’s embattled PZPN national football union to power on Monday.

Lipiec suspended the PZPN board and appointed a commissioner to supervise the Polish union earlier in January of this year arguing the PZPN board had done nothing to stem wide-spread corruption prevalent in all Polish leagues.

International football authorities FIFA and UEFA refused to recognise the move, sharply criticizing the Polish government for interfering with the PZPN’s independence.

Fresh elections are planned for later this year to replace the current PZPN board. Observers from the Polish presidential chancellery, the ministry of sport as well as both FIFA and UEFA are expected to supervise the process.

The government-appointed commissioner will continue to supervise the existing PZPN governing board until it is replaced.

FIFA President Joseph Blatter was due to meet with Polish President Lech Kaczynski later Monday to discuss the challenges faced by the Polish federation.

Sports Minister Lipiec moved in January to introduce a commissioner to run the PZPN amidst a wide-spread criminal probe in which dozens of referees, club owners and players have been charged with corruption.

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